Let’s Setup Our Goals For Next Year!

Any good farmer can bear witness that the quality of the harvest is a function of the focus he puts on the inputs, that is, quality of the seeds, quality of the soil, water, etc. In like manner, the quality of a year is a function of the focus we put on our goals, efforts to achieve these goals and being smart about achieving them.

Setting up goals is a gigantic step towards realizing them, setting up realistic goals is an achievement in itself and is necessary for a fruitful year. Many people fail at this because they lack an understanding of goals and what it means to setup goals and achieve them.

Coming up with goals and living up to them may not be so easy especially if you are doing it for the first time. It is a process that calls for patience and repeated practice. Setting up goals is a practice which can be mastered and guarantees a lifetime of all round success.

I personally have my career goals, financial goals, relationship goals, health goals, etc. These can only be attained by strategic planning, carefully outlining them in order of primacy and restricting them to a specific time frame. Now, here is exactly how I have setup my goals for next year.

Create a one year Action Plan

Unlike a To-do list which is focused on achieving singular goals at a time, an Action Plan is a simple comprehensive outline of tasks you need to complete in order to accomplish an objective.

Making an action plan is often missed or skipped when setting up goals because we concentrate on the results and more often than not forget to account for the step by step process needed to get there. My experience is that writing down all separate steps, then crossing out each one as I complete it is a strategy toward ultimate goal realization. The action plan is especially important for long-term goals like career prospects, financial goals, etc.

In order to successfully achieve goals, an action plan rather than a to-do list is important. To make one, simply write down all the activities to be done to achieve the goal, this should be written in a systematic way, that is, in the order they should be done. It is a very simple thing to do but its usefulness cannot be over emphasized.

Firstly, identify the tasks that you need. For example, in my relationship goals I will start by brainstorming the things I need to do to become a better partner, I may have to read books on relationships, attend mentorship seminars, spend more time with my partner, i.e. picnicking, camping, hiking, etc. Now, remember that it’s much better and easier to start this process at the onset, so outline the very first activities you will need to undertake.

Once a task or an activity has been completed, quickly move on to the next. Part of the brainstorming process is to create a priority list of these steps. They should be prioritized in order to meet precise deadlines but should be reasonable enough to accommodate the availability of other people.

Secondly, now you can analyze and delegate tasks because the entire plan is clear from start to finish. Now you should investigate each activity in detail, account for what could possibility go wrong, and provide a contingency plan for both the best and the worst case scenarios.

Check out the excess baggage– those steps that you can do without, but still, hit the target. Identify those activities and tasks which can be delegated or can be dealt with by someone else. Outline how to meet deadlines on particular steps in the action plan and then identify what additional resources could be needed.

For instance, in my financial goals, I plan to cut as much waste as possible in terms of cash expenses and the time factor. I will delegate all those activities that do not necessarily require my hands so that I focus my productive time and other resources on things am good at.

Thirdly, check the action plan for thoroughness and measure against factors like equipment and supplies, money, time, expertise, helpers, etc.

Ask how much materials are available now that will support the achievement of these goals. For example, an internal project which may require someone to create a better reporting format may require assistants, IT experts and a working system. Do I have all the supplies and equipment for my own indoor gym or do I need to outsource? Do I have the expertise to build my own website or should I partner with a web designer?

Setting the action plan up to this stage does not mean putting it away and waiting for the starting date. It must be kept with you and carried along as you go about your other tasks, think about it and keep updating with additional activities as need arises.

All in all, if next year is going to be fruitful, now is the best time to start planning because success does not come by accident. The greatest financial goal you can setup is improving your earning ability, and from there you can move to setting up other financial goals like smart expenditures goals, and minimized costs. Your health is your wealth; there is no known value on one’s health and it’s, therefore, important that your health is prioritized when planning.

The fact that no man is self-sustained and completely independent of people is a call to value relationships. Whether they are individual relationships or corporate relationships- I have learned to assign a high price on relationships, and the action plan should help to strategically build and sustain relationships.

Writing a step by step action plan to achieve our goals is the first step to accomplishment. This action plan is not cast-in-concrete, it can always be revised to accommodate arising issues and you do not have to feel bad or guilty. Remember that the quality of a year is a function of the focus we put on our goals, efforts to achieve these goals and being smart about achieving them. The action plan puts these in one place for you.

More in Goal Setting For New Year HERE

Until next time!